The former Cowwarr Butter Factory is a one and two-storey reinforced concrete building, constructed in 1918 to replace an earlier cheese and butter factory. The building was constructed in the Arts and Crafts style. The butter factory was built in an era which saw many small butter factories constructed in dairying areas. Improvement in road transport and the handling of milk in bulk led to the closure of all but the largest and most centrally located factories. The Cowwarr factory ceased operations as a factory in 1959 and is now used as an art gallery.
How is it significant?
The former Cowwarr Butter Factory is of architectural and historical importance to the State of Victoria.
Why is it significant?
The former Cowwarr Butter Factory is architecturally significant as a rare example of an industrial building employing Arts and Crafts design traditions. The distinctive styling and concrete construction define the building as an extraordinary example of a factory, particularly in the context of the many other cheese butter factories built in Victoria in the early 20th century. The Cowwarr factory is important as an architecturally distinctive building which still retains elements of its original butter factory form, particularly the boiler mountings, draft channels and chimney.
The former Cowwarr Butter Factory is historically significant for its associations with the Gippsland dairy industry which has been of critical importance to the development of the region and the State.
1. All exempted alterations are to be planned and carried out in a manner which prevents damage to the fabric of the registered place or object.
2. Should it become apparent during further inspection or the carrying out of alterations that original or previously hidden or inaccessible details of the place or object are revealed which relate to the significance of the place or object, then the exemption covering such alteration shall cease and the Executive Director shall be notified as soon as possible.
3. If there is a conservation policy and plan approved by the Executive Director, all works shall be in accordance with it.
4. Nothing in this declaration prevents the Executive Director from amending or rescinding all or any of the permit exemptions.
5. Nothing in this declaration exempts owners or their agents from the responsibility to seek relevant planning or building permits from the responsible authority where applicable.
* Interior painting/wall papering to walls and ceilings, provided the preparation work for painting/papering does not remove evidence of the building's original paint or decorative scheme.
* Removal of existing carpets/ flexible floor coverings.
* Installation of carpets and flexible floor covering.
* Installation of curtain track, rod, blinds and other window dressings.
* Installation of hooks, nails and other devices for the hanging of paintings, mirrors and other wall mounted works of art.
Refurbishment of Bathrooms, Toilets, Kitchens
* Refurbishment of bathroom/toilet including removal of existing sanitary fixtures and associated piping, mirrors and floor coverings, and installation of new fixtures, and wall and floor coverings.
* Removal of existing any benches or fixtures (stoves, dishwashers etc.) and floor coverings and installation of new benches and fixtures, including associated plumbing and wiring.
* Re-wiring provided that all new wiring is fully concealed and any original light switches are retained in-situ.
* Installation of smoke detectors.
* Installation of insulation.
* All works to the added mezzanines and to the new additions to the north, east and west of the original building, provided that these works do not interfere with the fabric of the original building.